In a program backed by Mayor Eric Adams’s office, myriad City Council members, the Borough Presidents of Brooklyn and the Bronx, and community advocates; the legendary professional skater Tony Hawk is building four new skateparks in New York City.
The initiative is part of The Skatepark Project (TSP), a program founded in 2002 by Hawk to build skateparks in underserved neighborhoods throughout the U.S. To date, TSP has awarded $13 million in funding to help build and sustain 700 public skateparks in all 50 states. TSP’s International Program extends its philanthropy abroad; the nonprofit is also active globally in places as far flung as Afghanistan, Cambodia, and South Africa.
Under TSP’s direction, two skateparks will be built in Brooklyn, and two more in the Bronx. Two of the skateparks will be built from scratch, and two existing ones will be renovated. These spaces will double as recreation areas more broadly replete with green space and community gathering areas. The ramps will be available for skateboarding, scooters, BMX, in-line skating, roller skating, and wheelchair motocross.
In the Bronx, Soundview Skatepark is slated to replace an antiquated asphalt roller rink with a 15,000 square foot custom poured-in-place skatepark. This park will be designed in part by Tyshawn Jones, a native New Yorker who grew up not far from the site. Jones is working with Majority Leader Amanda Farías (District 18) on this segment. Meanwhile, construction at Bronx Skatepark will upgrade the existing venue with contemporary concrete renovation that improves accessibility, capacity, and functionality.
In Crown Heights, Brooklyn, a renovation on Brower Skatepark will take place. This construction will make the existing skatepark more accessible to all skill-levels and increase access to all rider-types. Council member Chi Ossé is behind this project. “I am so excited to welcome The Skatepark Project into our neighborhood with an investment in our parks and in our youth,” Ossé said in a statement. “This type of public-private partnership is important to building the enriched communities we deserve, and there is no better place for this investment today than Council District 36.”
The Brooklyn Skate Garden, located not far from Brower in Brooklyn’s Mount Prospect Park, will be a new 40,000-square-foot, custom poured-in-place concrete skatepark built from the ground up. It will be fitted with security lighting, spectator seating, community gardens, and space for programming to be integrated into the skatepark and park setting, officials said. The design is happening in collaboration between The Skatepark Project and Pablo Ramirez Foundation. It will be dedicated to professional skater Pablo Ramirez and support skateboarding, art, and music.
The plan to build the new skateparks is being fast-tracked to open up much-needed public recreation space for New Yorkers before 2027.
The parks, New York City officials said, could concretize the Big Apple as the skateboarding capital of the East Coast that will serve New Yorkers while attracting visitors from around the world; amplifying the city as a skateboarding hub.